An astonishing Philippe Mexes volley gave Milan victory over Inter in China, but Antonio Nocerino saw red on Geoffrey Kondogbia.
The first Derby della Madonnina of the season was in the Chinese city of Shenzhen for the International Champions Cup. Roberto Mancini picked a surprising XI almost entirely made of youth team players, while Sinisa Mihajlovic started Andrea Bertolacci in midfield.
Young defender Rodrigo Ely nodded a Keisuke Honda free kick over the bar, while Juan Pablo Carrizo was brave and decisive to deny M’Baye Niang one-on-one.
Pedro Delgado curled over from a fine Assane Gnoukouri assist, as the Nerazzurri started to emerge from their shell after the opening half-hour. There were water breaks, as it was extremely hot and humid at the Amman Stadium.
Niang again turned off target, but Milan wasted a golden opportunity when Alessandro Matri sprung the offside trap only to roll meekly across for Niang, allowing it to be intercepted by Davide Santon.
Both Matri and Samuele Longo got the ball in the net just before half-time, but only after the offside flag was raised.
There were numerous changes at the break and Christian Abbiati had to block a Yuto Nagatomo angled drive, while Cristian Zapata nodded a Niang free kick over the bar.
Luiz Adriano and Carlos Bacca made their Milan debuts and immediately combined to earn a corner, but it was Mexes who opened the scoring with an absolutely sensational strike. The corner was floated to the edge of the box for his scissor-kick volley that looped into the far top corner. Absolutely unstoppable.
Moments later Bacca forced Carrizo into a save at the near post, while Zapata showed good strength to stop Mauro Icardi getting his shot away in the box.
There were more substitutions, as Danilo D’Ambrosio went off injured and Gabriel Paletta managed to get himself booked within five minutes for taking down Mateo Kovacic.
The Derby della Madonnina is never friendly and Antonio Nocerino was shown a straight red card late on for a tackle from behind on Kondogbia.
Hernanes tried an acrobatic volley too, but this one was wide from 12 yards.
Milan 1-0 Inter
Scorers: Mexes 62 (M)
Milan: Diego Lopez (Abbiati 46); Calabria, Alex (Mexes 46), Ely (Zapata 46), De Sciglio (Paletta 78); De Jong (Montolivo 46), Poli (Jose Mauri 46), Bertolacci (Nocerino 46); Honda (Bonaventura 46); Matri (Bacca 60), Niang (Luiz Adriano 60)
Inter: Carrizo (Berni 76); Santon (D’Ambrosio 59) (Ranocchia 76), Andreolli, Popa (Kovacic 80), Nagatomo (Juan Jesus 77); Gnoukouri (Guarin 75), Taider (Brozovic 59); Baldini, Delgado (Hernanes 59), Dimarco (Kondogbia 59); Longo (Palacio 76)
Sent off: Nocerino 85 (M)
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